Written by: Mike Smith | 14 Dec 2022

How can I help my child make important career decisions?

Well I’ve heard this question a hundred times, and unfortunately, the answer is not a simple one.

Some people know what they want to do from a young age, and no, becoming an astronaut doesn’t count (the majority of the time at least). Others don’t seem to find their calling up until the age of 40. The vast majority tend to settle somewhere in the middle, around age 18 – 25.

As parents we can also find ourselves being quite pushy and vocal about our children’s future career choices, and although it’s because we only want the best for them, it can be taken negatively and viewed as criticism.

Unfortunately in the modern world, important career decisions start at a very young age. By the time you are about to finish your GCSEs at the age of 16 you are suddenly expected to know what you want to do, otherwise you risk making an incorrect A level / College choice. This pressure can be made infinitely worse if their peer-group happen to know what they want to do. This can, and does, lead to some mental health challenges.

However, what we absolutely cannot do is force decisions upon them. We can try to offer helpful advice, guidance and generally try to point them in the right direction, but ultimately the decision will be theirs to make. For the majority of parents our goal is to raise a kind, helpful, productive member of society, and a career will often be the precursor to this.

From our personal experiences, it’s not always what the parents are suggesting that’s the problem, but more often than not, it’s who is delivering the advice. As a result, a trusted 3rd party with no affiliation to either the parent or the young adult can produce more positive results. People can generally be more honest about what they really want from life when they are talking to someone who they don’t know on a personal level.

If you are struggling with a son or daughter that is showing little interest in moving forward with their post-education life, who is also finding it hard to know where to start, please do get in contact with us. Career Smart are a unique career consultancy focusing on providing young adults (ages 18 – 25) across the UK with all the required tools that can enable them to succeed in a modern, competitive job market.

Career Smart offer a comprehensive range of specialist 1-to-1 coaching packages spanning over a 8-weeks. The 10+ hours of one-to-one coaching takes place over both Zoom and telephone calling and is designed to help the person identify the right career path for them, and offers them all the tools, guidance, support, tips and tricks to allow them to stand out from the crowd and succeed. All delivered by an experienced recruitment and coaching leader.